A man has been arrested and charged in connection to the death of an esteemed local dog breeder.
Darrell Lee Broxton, 50, faces charges of first-degree murder, burglary, felony and misdemeanor theft.
Peter Belmont, 69, was murdered in his Kansas City, KS, home near 115th Street and Leavenworth Road on Dec. 16. Relatives and those who worked with and were friends with him were left devastated and with many questions for months. He was a very influential and well-known Afghan Hound breeder.
Apparently, his killer also let Belmont's beloved dog, Frankie, out of the house and Frankie was hit by a vehicle. Frankie had to have surgery to pin her left femur and reconstruct two large bone fragments. Friends sought donations to help pay for the 6-month-old dog's surgery. It was successful, and Frankie spent time recovering at the home of a co-breeder in St. Louis, MO, before getting adopted.
For months police searched for clues to find the man's killer. Police said Belmont's van was taken from his home along with other personal belongings. They were later recovered.
Regina Belmonte is one of his sisters and lives in Colorado. She was shocked to hear of the news of an arrest.
"It's so sad. I'm shaking at this point. I'm overwhelmed that all of this has happened," Belmonte said.
Police have not released a motive, and his sisters said they do not recognize that suspect's name. They can't believe their brother's peaceful life ended this way.
"It's hard for us to understand why someone would do this to him," his sister, Kathleen Belmonte, said. "He was an educator, he was a very staunch animal lover, he gave a lot of his time to his friends and his dog."
In February, Peter Belmont's family pooled their money together and increased the Crimestoppers reward money to $5,000 in hopes that the money would help bring justice.
While Belmont's and his sisters' birth certificates spell their last names differently, Kathleen Belmonte said that never changed how close they were.
"I don't know why. I don't know the motive. I have no idea," Kathleen Belmonte said when they increased the reward money. "My family is deeply concerned and saddened by Peter's death, and we felt that this would help the KCK city police."
In addition to being a respected breeder, Belmont was a credentialed international judge. He traveled across the world, most recently to Germany, and had further trips planned.
Broxton is being held in the Wyandotte County Jail on a $1 million bond.
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